White Cake






A few days ago, I shared my vanilla cake recipe, and this white cake is next in my series of basic from-scratch cakes.  Airy and cloud-like, white cake is lighter than vanilla cake but not quite as delicate and spongy as an angel food cake.

White cake has always been one of my dad's favorites, and this cake was such a success, that I think I might have to make it when they visit for Christmas this year, maybe frosted with chocolate buttercream.









There are similarities between this cake and my vanilla cake recipe, but some important differences to note.  Cake flour, which contains less protein than all-purpose flour yields the beautifully tender crumb one expects in a white cake.  Sour cream instead of oil keeps the cake moist but adds a beautiful tang, not to mention contributes to the pure white color of the cake.  But most importantly is the airyness achieved by folding whipped egg whites into the batter.

The cake layers bake tall and slightly domed, which settle down ever so slightly while cooling so that the cakes don't even require leveling.

I frosted the cake with buttercream, flavored with almond extract and tinted a lovely blush color.  The piped rosettes and swirls all over the cake look ever so fancy.








Inspired by the dreamy light streaming in our dining room window Sunday afternoon, I photographed the cake in front of the window, letting the backlight illuminate the cake in its soft glow.

Every day, I fall in love with our home even more.  My husband and I have put so much time and work into it in the 8 months we've lived here, and it has truly become ours.  Someday, maybe this fall, I'll share some of our renovation projects.

But for today, let me just tell you about that black and white striped candle.  Have you seen those outrageously overpriced striped boutique candles available online?  After briefly entertaining the idea of buying a few since I do love how they look, I made my own with 50-cent plain white tapered candles and a roll of black duck tape from a craft store.  And with the seam of the tape facing the wall, no one will ever know.  Of course, I don't intend to burn them with the tape on them, but sitting on our mantle just for decoration, they look stunning.  Such a pretty contrast next to this feminine cake.


Previous Post in this Series: Vanilla Cake
Next Post in this Series:  Chocolate Cake



White Cake
printable
  • 2 3/4 cups cake flour
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon white distilled vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
Preheat the oven to 350.  Spray three 8-inch pans with non-stick spray.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt.

In a separate bowl (clean and grease-free), whip the egg whites with an electric mixer until soft peaks form.  Whip for another minute or two until the whites are not quite stiff, but stay on the beaters when you lift them up.  The whites should still be quite wet, not dry.

Add the milk, sour cream, vinegar and vanilla to the dry ingredients and whisk vigorously for about two minutes until well combined.  Gently fold in the whipped egg whites in three additions for a light and airy batter.

Divide the batter between the pans.  Bake for about 18-22 minutes, until risen and a toothpick comes out clean.  Set the pans on wire racks, cover loosely with a clean kitchen towel and cool completely before frosting with your favorite buttercream.

For my perfect buttercream recipe, click here.  I frosted this cake with vanilla buttercream, slightly flavored with almond extract, and tinted a subtle blush color.

Recipe from Curly Girl Kitchen

45 comments :

  1. Again..stunning pretty cake and so well styled;)
    Thanks for ths keeper recipe.

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    1. I wish I could invite you over for a piece and a cup of coffee. :)

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  2. Stunning!
    The striped candle I noticed immediately....great idea!
    Hope you are enjoying this lovely weather!
    Cheers!
    Linda :o)

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    1. The fall weather here has been gorgeous lately - sunny and warm but not too hot. :)

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  3. Cake looks delicious....I'm going to try it though I cannot source the cake/sponge flour locally at the mo......but the duct tape ...beautiful ingenious and hillarious....all at the same time

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  4. Looks amazing. Very beautiful and I hope is very sweet

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  5. Can you make this in a 9x13 pan?

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  6. Your cake looks amazing. I can't watch staring at it. I'll try it soon. Thank you so much for sharing.

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  7. Is this cake sturdy enough to take ganache and fondant?

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    1. I'm not sure - I never cover cakes with fondant, so it's not something I tested with this recipe.

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  8. Where do i get distilled vinegar? Is there a substitute?

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    1. Distilled white vinegar can be purchased from any grocery store. It's very easy to find.

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  9. Is there any oil or butter in this cake

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  10. Just tried this recipe, and I must say I was not pleased with the results. The cupcakes stuck to the cupcake liners and did not taste good at all. I let my daughter who is 19 try them and she said the buttercream icing tasted better than the cupcake. Was looking to use this recipe for a birthday cake. But will have to find another one.

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    1. Sorry you didn't like it, although I only tested it in cake pans and not for cupcakes, and many recipes cannot be used for both. An egg-white based cake is generally sticky, so it's not something I would have recommended in cupcake liners. ;) Better luck next time!

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    2. Hi!! I baked this cake (6", 3 layers) and I LOVE it! It is so delicious and soft and moist! I also made cupcakes with the leftover batter though, and I found it was not ideal because the cake stuck to the liners too much. :( I initially thought maybe I need to bake them a minute or 2 more, but if you say it might just be an egg-white based cake general attribute of stickiness, then maybe I shouldn't try again as is. I LOVED the recipe though! Do you have any suggestions to modify for cupcakes? I'm making a wedding cake (6" sweetheart cake and a lot of cupcakes) and want to use this recipe, but maybe I should find another recipe for the cupcakes. Any suggestions would be super appreciated!!!

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    3. Unfortunately, I don't have any from-scratch white cake recipes that I've tested as cupcakes, so I couldn't really suggest any modifications for this one. I'm so glad you liked it as a layer cake, though!

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  11. Hey! I have been on the hunt for the best white cake.. and i think i have a winner!! Your cake was my favorite with texture and moistness! My only issues was it had a little too much "twang" to it. Im guessing it because the recipes calls for sour cream AND distilled vinegar. My question is will the recipe bake the same leaving the vinegar out? I know that baking is chemistry, and not sure if it will mess it all up or not. Thank you!

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    1. I'm so glad you liked it! Good question about the vinegar - I use a combination of whole milk and a little vinegar as a substitute for buttermilk, which I never seem to have on hand. But since there is sour cream in this recipe, the acidity in that should be enough to react with the leavening, and you can probably leave out the vinegar without a problem.

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  12. Hello. I tried this recipe today for my daughter's birthday cake. The cake is very delicious and I am mostly pleased with the results. However, the cake was a little spongy and not as tall as yours. The only thing I forgot to do was add the vinegar. Any suggestions?

    ~Shanelle

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    1. I forgot to mention that I made three layers.

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  13. Could I use buttermilk instead of vingear milk mixture, what would be the measurement for it... And what about butter?

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    1. Yes, vinegar/milk and buttermilk are interchangeable. I wouldn't use butter in this recipe, as that would make it heavier.

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  14. Hi im just wondering. It's for my 3yr old bday for play group. What can I substitute for sour cream? I would use butter milk instead of milk/vinegar. But I was curious about the source cream.

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    1. You might try Greek yogurt instead, since it has a similar texture and acidity to sour cream.

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  15. I made this and it is the cake I am going with to make a wedding cake for my friend! I did use a 9×13 cake pan as I needed a wider cake for what I am designing. I saw that someone asked the difference in time. I baked it for 22 minutes, what you originally said. It obviously was still very liquid-like. I added 20 more minutes. It came out perfect! Finally I can say I found a recipe to be proud of! Thank you

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  16. If I just wanna make vanilla cake can I use 2 whole eggs and omit the vinegar?

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    1. I wouldn't. I have a tested vanilla cake recipe on my blog, though: http://www.curlygirlkitchen.com/2015/09/just-vanilla-cake-recipe.html

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  17. Hi Heather,
    I just found your blog and already love it! Especially your White Cake looks so pretty and delicious. I've been looking for a good White Cake recipe for such a long time and I hope that I found it now... There is just a tiny problem: I am living in Germany and I love trying out recipes from other countries, but on your blog I couldn't find any hint, whether you're using American or English cups for converting to grams/litres... Hope you can help me :-)
    Thank you!

    Hülya

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    1. I'm so glad you like my blog! The Imperial system is what is used in America, not the Metric system, so all of my measurements are in US ounces, pounds, cups, teaspoons, tablespoons, etc.

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  18. Can this recipe be doubled? I'm always leary about doing that.

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    1. I couldn't say, since I only tested it for the ingredients listed. It might be better for you to mix up separate batches if you need more batter.

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  19. Hi, can I add oil for a little more moist ness or that would be to much.

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  20. Hi, can I add oil for a little more moist ness or that would be to much.

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  21. I just made this cake this morning and it is delicious! Perfect delicate texture and flavor! I can't stop eating it and it's not even frosted!

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  22. Can I make ahead and freeze the cake?

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  23. Yes, you can wrap the baked cake layers in plastic and freeze until you need to frost them.

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  24. Hi, your recipe looks divine, tomorrow is my son's bday and I will prepare this one for him. I noticed that my cakes come out nicer when using parchment paper. instead of non-stick spray, can i use parchment for this recipe?

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  25. I Made this cake yesterday and LOVED it- my family thoroughly enjoyed. My only question is that the texture was a little bit rubbery/chewy. Is this normal? Or do you think it was overmixed?

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  26. I found your recipe on pinterest and I am so happy I did! Left out the vinegar and used 1 cup buttermilk and half cup milk instead. AMAZING!!! Made 2 6" cakes and 10 cupcakes with the left over batter. They turned out great also! They did not stick to the liners much.

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    1. so instead of 1 tablespoon of vinegar you used one cup buttermilk and half a cup of milk. I thought it you substitute vinegar for something you should use the same equivalent as in 1 tablespoon of buttermilk for 1 tablespoon of vinegar?

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    2. Milk + Vinegar = Buttermilk, so since my recipe calls for 1 1/2 cups of milk + 1 tablespoon vinegar, then a substitute would be 1 1/2 cups of buttermilk, or like Michelle did, with 1 cup buttermilk and 1/2 cup milk.

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  27. looks great recipe but can i substitute sour cream with yogurt , and is this cake can use for laying coz i want to make it in 14 inch pan and i dont know how much batter i should make to fill the 14*3 pan.

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